While blood pressure readings are often correlated to a person’s heart health, they can also give you an idea of what’s happening inside of your body. Your blood pressure speaks to your diet and exercise routine (or lack thereof), giving you a “bigger picture” view of your health.
But what is blood pressure exactly? A blood pressure reading is broken into two parts: the systolic and diastolic values. The systolic number (which is higher) measures the force each heart beat puts on the walls of your blood vessels. The diastolic number (which is lower) measures the force that occurs while the heart is filling back up with blood between heartbeats.
Your doctor can help you measure and understand a blood pressure reading that is ideal for you. But to give you an idea, adults should strive for a reading of 120/80. Once you’ve hit 140/90, you are considered to have high blood pressure. Most Americans’ blood pressure falls between these values, an area called prehypertension. It’s people in this area that must make lifestyle changes to decrease their blood pressure to healthier numbers before problems arise.
Making lifestyle changes to decrease your blood pressure helps reduce your risk of heart attack, stroke and heart failure. Manage your numbers by:
- Introducing more physical activity into your routine
- Consuming less sodium
- Eating fewer processed foods and more natural foods
- Maintaining a healthy BMI
- Limiting alcohol consumption to five or fewer drinks per week
- Ceasing tobacco use
One in three American adults is plagued with high blood pressure, but with the right healthcare and the help of your doctor, you don’t have to be one of them!
Your health is our priority. Call Blake Elliott Insurance Agency Inc. at 209-928-3471 for more information on health insurance.